Thursday, 15 May 2014

Oh feminists, you so crazy...

For anyone with a strong gag reflex who might be so inclined, The Agenda with Steve Paikin, a TVOntario current events show, had Justin Trottier of CAFE and Professor Janice Fiamengo on to discuss "Free Speech: At what cost?"

Also included in the panel discussion was Rachel Decoste, a (feminist) community coordinator and HuffPo columnist, and Alice McLachlan, a (feminist) professor of philosophy.

Among examples given of the broader topic were the LA Clippers racist remark fiasco, the racist slurs directed at PK Subban by Boston Bruins fans, Ayaan Hirsi Ali being denied an honorary degree at Brandeis for criticizing Islam, and the feminist protests, disruptions and shutting down of CAFE talks (particularly Fiamengo's latest one at the University of Ottawa).

A lot of people have asked me how I remained so calm when I did my own panel discussion with a feminist (Naomi Wolf), given her level of intellectual dishonesty and shameless emotional manipulation. Well, Naomi's got nothing on these ladies. I felt the repeated urge to yell at my screen as McLachlan repeatedly interrupted Fiamengo, condescended to her, twisted herself into knots trying to justify the shutting down of Fiamengo's Ottawa talk, redefining silencing of free speech, and even suggesting at one point that if Fiamengo doesn't like what happened, maybe she should rethink the things she says. All of this was said, of course, with saccharine smiles planted across both feminists faces, and very gentle tones, as if smiling and talking softly can somehow negate the repressive nature of their opinions.

Among the contributions made by Decoste (IIRC) was that denying the existence of "rape culture" silences people. Oh, but you know what doesn't silence people? Banging on desks or blowing horns or pulling fire alarms, as these are all just examples of free expression. Kid you not.

While both Decoste and McLachlan, when pressed, admitted that they "don't support" the pulling of fire alarms (not willing to publicly support/endorse a criminal act? Color me SHOCKED), they didn't outright condemn the behavior, either. They spent a lot of time emphasizing that the protesters had their reasons, and that they didn't want taxpayer and tuition dollars supporting opportunities for Fiamengo to promulgate her dastardly views (never mind that feminists are not the only people who pay taxes or tuition). Decoste remarked at one point that she had watched Fiamengo's talk at Queen's University (the night prior to the debacle in Ottawa), and that it was drivel that did not deserve a public platform. When asked for an example, she said that questioning rape statistics that feminists have relied on for decades was... I guess that counts as "drivel". McLachlan implied that Fiamengo's description of women's studies programs as incoherent and intellectually empty was false, essentially, because it was insulting.

Oh, it was painful to watch.

Edited to add: In a unique departure, McLachlan chided Fiamengo for characterizing the protesters as radicals, because according to her, they are NOT radicals. Which kind of makes me wonder about all those "moderate" feminists who have gone on and on and on about how they're not like "those" feminists who've been protesting us and shutting our events down. "Those" feminists are not mainstream, they're radical...

Anyway, anyone who wants to should go watch the video here. Read the comments, too, for some more gorgeous hypocrisy from the feminist viewers who have commented. Just keep a bucket handy.


  1. 'The Agenda' has had an agenda ever since it came on air. OFten shocking bias all the while imagining itself as 'progressive' and fair.

    It is not actually balanced and does not allow non-PC views if the speakers can actually defend their position.

    TVO is taxpayer funded and liberal controlled, but nice to see you were able to speak.


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  2. I must admit I gave up after about five minutes. I'm sorry. I have a fairly low tolerance of sanctimonious bull -- and use most of that on Sunday, when I have to deal with same at church.

    But dealing with these oh so polite women smiling as the poo all over 500 years of struggle to get freedom of press and conscience? Nauseating.

    Give me big red any day of the week. She expects you to tell her off: in fact she courts it.

    However, I have put a brief list of the errors within the video on their site under my own name. Perhaps it will help them draft a better argument.

  3. Wow, that was bad for my blood pressure...

  4. The Agenda itself wasn't too bad in my opinion. It was Decoste and McLachlan that annoyed me.

    1. Agreed. Steve Paikin's usually pretty good at not letting people get away with bullshit. He called Decoste on her assertion that Fiamengo's Queen's talk was "drivel". He jumped on her, asking "in what way? Can you give us an example?"

  5. Just read an old article of yours from back when the GMP used to be cool. "Patriarchy Schmatriarchy". Outstanding work man - cleared a few things up for me too! Thanks muchly and keep fighting the good fight!

  6. It seems what Alice McLachlan and her peers have in mind, when they say Janice Fiamengo should modify her way of thinking, is the Chinese Cultural Revolution model, when concentration camps served the purpose of reeducating members of the opposition to Maoism orthodoxy.

  7. Debating people at that level of intellectual dishonesty is like debating persons who fart all the time. In my view, feminist "intellectuals" do this deliberately, as they, at least, sense that they're full of shit.

  8. When watching this it hit me! The supposedly anti-ideological feminist-leftist thinking, that Alice McLachlan here embodies, is in fact one of the strongest manifestations of ideology. She (and they) are are almost totally blind(ed) to how much thought, that´s never been proven, is purely speculative and theoretical and that deserves to be questioned and scrutinised, they just find self-evidently true and beyond criticism. That´s what ideology is fundamentally about; unquestioned fundaments. But they probably think that this does not apply to them because they are ONLY (also ideology) fighting for a good cause and democracy, a thought which is also a manifestation of ideology.

    Another manifestation of this ideology, besides the belief that no matter what they do it´s in the service (and name) of good and free speech, is their belief that they (feminist-leftists) could not be fanatical, only radical. So no matter how knee jerkingly reactionist and unintellectually unreflected their responses are, they are never fanatical, but only radical, because it´s only the opponents that could be fanatics and we could only be radicals.

    Another paradox in her thinking is her claim that your thought´s are not free from consequences (which is true) but that she completely denies this in the case of rape. According to her women have no responsiblility for the situations they end up in and that people who hold women accountable for situations they end up in are "rape apologetics". Even though a woman has no responsibility for the actual rape, she could be partly accountable for ending up in the situation. But according to her the fact that your words, actions and choices have consequences does not apply in the case or rape. Here no matter what she does, she never has any responsibility.

    1. I agree with you. I see ideological feminists simply as believers, determined that everyone must either see the world through their beliefs or be silenced. Every perception they have or expression they make is shaped by the core belief, and the only truth is their truth, which is impervious to argument or empirical proof. Watching them speak, it is as if they are blowing great big bubbles, which envelop them, so that they speak from within a distorted viewpoint that they can't even tell is there any more. Quite entertaining in a surreal, if sad way. In another age they would be burning people at the stake, all the while telling themselves they were doing God's work. Unquestioned fundaments indeed.

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Commenting policy:

All comments are welcome here. I refuse to censor points of view that differ from my own.

I recognize that I may be challenging the deep-seated beliefs of some people, and perhaps stirring up emotions in others. However, I would ask:

- if you care to respond to anything that I have said, please do not simply link to or quote some statistic. Do not simply regurgitate things you have been told are true. Think about what I am saying. Respond with an argument. Offer something from your personal observations, and explain to me how you feel your statistic is connected to your experience.

- If you wish to be part of a discussion, try not to dismiss what I or a another commenter says out of hand. Yes, that means that some lines of thought or ideologies may not stand up to scrutiny (perhaps even my own).

- Remember, ad hominem attacks diminish everyone involved. If you want to criticize anything, do so passionately and directly - but debate is about attacking ideas, not people.

Have at you!